Betfair ambassador, Michael Ballack have predicted the likely outcome of Friday’s England versus Germany friendly game.
The former Chelsea, Bayern Munich and Germany star also believes that England have all it takes to go far in the World Cup in Russia, if only they can get a player in the mould of Manchester United’s legend – Scholes.
“They lack a strategist,” Ballack said.
“They are missing a midfielder in the mould of Paul Scholes, who can dictate the flow and tempo of a game.
“This is where the English team are missing some class to take them to the next level.”
Speaking ahead of the Wembley showdown between England and his country Germany, he said: “Harry Kane, Dele Alli, Kyle Walker and Raheem Sterling are top-class players at top-class teams, playing top-class football.
“But the lack of a strategist at the heart of their play is holding them back. England need only to look on their own doorstep for the type of player I am talking about.
“Manchester City are top of the Premier League, in large part due to the match-winning exploits of Kevin De Bruyne and David Silva.
These are the type of players England needs –matching technical ability with flawless vision.
“They are also the type of players who excel under pressure, which can be an issue for England.”
“The level of expectation on England whenever a big tournament rolls around seems to get bigger every time. It can weigh heavily on a team and inhibit them.
“In Germany, we have more positive experiences with this type.
“We have won four World Cup finals and lost finals. This experience in such high-stakes games has made it easier for us.
“There is no lack of top talents in England and Germany.
“I will be watching avidly to see which country can make the most progress in the run-up to Russia.
“My prediction is 2-2.”
Ballack reached the World Cup final in 2002 where the German national team lost 2-0 to Brazil. But he scored a total of 42 goals in 98 appearances for his country.
At club level, he won the Premier League, three FA Cups and reached the Champions League final with Chelsea in 2008 where the Blues lost to Manchester United on penalty shoot-out.